Individual Artists

We are the main support for individuals working in the creative sector, offering a broad range of funding and development opportunities through our Public and National Lottery funds. We support and promote the widest possible spectrum of high quality arts and creativity.

Contemporary dancer dressed all in white performs barefooted on stage against black and white striped backdrop.
‘Hard to be Soft’. Oona Doherty & Prime Cut Productions. Photo: Luca Truffarelli.

How we support Individual Artists

We support creative practitioners providing amazing creative and cultural experiences to people right across Northern Ireland, from drama and dance to visual arts, music to disability arts, circus to language arts, poetry to arts in the community.

The key funding stream for Individual Artists is:

Support for the Individual Artist Programme (SIAP)

SIAP opens annually, usually summertime, and includes a suite of schemes designed to support artists in the full range of their activities, including:

  • General Art Awards
  • Artists Career Enhancement Scheme (ACES)
  • Major Individual Artist Awards
  • Artists International Development Fund
  • Self-arranged Residencies
  • Anne O’Donoghue Professional Development Award
  • Travel Awards (Travel Awards are open for applications all year round)
  • Other Programmes

We may provide further funding opportunities for individual artists at different times during the year. In recent times this has included funding for musical instruments, Young Musicians Platform, Minority Ethnic Artists, Creative Industries, art acquisitions, and international opportunities.


Pictured in Ulster Museum gallery are opera singer Giselle Allen, composer Greg Caffrey, poet and performer Alice McCullough, dance maker Eileen McClory and visual artist Jennifer Trouton
Major Individual Artists 2022

Meet our Aces and Major Artists

ACES is a professional development programme which provides funding awards to Northern Ireland’s most talented emerging and mid-career artists, helping them to create new work and develop their professional careers.

Programmes currently open for Applications

We announce the opening of our funding programmes via our website, social media and e-newsletter.

Sorry, there are currently no programmes open at this time.